Vitamin E Vitamin E


Chlorine Alternative Makes Tap Water More Deadly

I run articles regularly on this Web site about the importance of drinking clean pure water -- about a quart a day for every 50 pounds of body weight you carry. Clean water doesn't mean coming from the tap, however. Tap water should be avoided at all costs because it contains chlorine and may contain fluoride, toxic substances that, with ongoing consumption, can have dire consequences for the body.

If you still haven't given up tap water, here's the best reason to start today: A new study reports that a chlorine alternative used in the U.S. to disinfect some public drinking water can produce a class of byproducts far more toxic than those generated by chlorine.

Those alternatives -- a family of chemicals called iodoacids -- have been discovered only in chloramine-treated drinking water in Corpus Christi, Texas. Chloramines are a combination of chlorine and ammonia used in some municipal water supplies as an alternative to chlorine.

Research over the past three decades has shown when chlorine interacts with natural organic matter in drinking water, the process can generate byproducts that are linked to an increased risk of certain cancers and birth and developmental defects.

Some of these byproducts are regulated by the EPA, and the agency is now finalizing a new rule that will toughen the standards for chlorine byproducts with known health effects, a move expected to cause at least some water treatment facilities to switch to chlorine alternatives.

Some EPA researchers found iodoacids from Corpus Christi's water were toxic to hamster ovary cells. But it is unknown whether there is a large concentration of iodoacids in the drinking water or whether it is enough to harm human health over time.

Just the same, it's worth your time and good health to filter your home's water supply. And don't think drinking bottled water will help you sidestep the problem either. Some bottled water is actually no cleaner than tap water.

Yahoo News September 21, 2004

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